Matthew 1:5- “Salmon begot Boaz by Rahab, Boaz begot Obed by Ruth, Obed begot Jesse” NKJV
Rahab is an interesting woman to me. She is often referred to, in scripture, and therefore by us, as Rahab the harlot. Today, I would like to take a look at Rahab, the ex-harlot, the mother of Boaz.
In the second chapter of the book of Joshua, two spies are sent out to “look over” the land. In doing so, they end up at Rahab’s establishment. In my Logos commentary it is mentioned that Rahab’s place could have been more like a hostel or tavern, than a brothel, where visitors could have respite from their travels. I can’t prove that, but I am going to go with that! We know they did not stop for sinful reasons, but to check out what was going on in Jericho.
Of course Rahab would be interested in these strangers in her place. They could have had a conversation, God could have given her a dream, or she could have just saw an opportunity and grabbed it. We don’t know for sure! But we do know that she hid the men in her home, lied to the king’s men about their whereabouts, and made plans with them to spare her life and the lives of her family members, as she had spared theirs.
Rahab and her family were rescued and became a part of the Israelites, not as slaves, but as honored members of the Israelites, at least Rahab did. We know this because she later married Salmon, a leader of the Israelites and gave birth to Boaz. This is her summary that we all know, but now I want to talk about her as a mother.
Salmon saw qualities in Rahab that surpassed his knowledge of her past. Although she may have been a harlot, by the time she was rescued, this was not the life she would continue with. Let’s look at some of her qualities:
1. She was a woman of faith-Every action of hers involving the spies shows that she had already transferred her allegiance from what she was taught to what she believed! She heard about what the Lord had done for the Israelites and in essence laid her trust in Him when she assisted them. Great moms truly believe that they are to diligently teach their children about the Lord, and I believe that both Rahab and Salmon had many opportunities to share with Boaz the wonderful experiences they had in God.
2. She was influential-She had a place of business, the king’s men trusted her word, and she was able to convince the spies that she could be trusted. She also convinced her family that leaving Jericho and placing their trust in the Lord and His people was a good thing. She continued exercising her influence over her son. This was evident by the fact that he later married Ruth, a Moabite woman, not a Jewish woman, whose commitment to God and family caught his eye.
3. She was a caring woman-She could’ve just made plans for herself, but she didn’t. She saved her father’s household. This was instilled in her son, because it was Ruth’s care for Naomi that got Boaz’s attention.
4. She was courageous-Lying to the spies and being caught was a possibility, and yet, she did what she had to do to save herself and her family. Again, it is obvious that Boaz had a great deal of respect for his mother’s courage because Ruth’s courage captured his attention.
She was also a hard working woman, a no-nonsense kind of woman, and she appealed to Salmon. When he saw her, he didn’t see a harlot, but a woman of faith, of courage, of genuine concern for others, adaptable, and one who had the favor of God on her life. He saw the mother of his children. And today, I salute this mother, Boaz’s mother, as someone we can model our lives after.
Just like Rahab, mothers today have a huge influence on their children. Our children will gravitate to our faith if it is a deep, abiding faith in the Lord. They will embrace our God and look for a mate who also embraces Him. When they see our love, our care for others, they too will become adults who care for others, demonstrating it to their family, friends, and even strangers. When they see our courage in the midst of the storms of life, they too learn to take courage and to not fear because it was modeled before them.
We do much, as mothers, for our families, for our children. Some times we may feel it’s no big deal, and other times we may feel overwhelmed and not appreciated; but what we do is so important! It really is! Rahab didn’t start out with the best background for being a mother, but with the help of God she turned out to not only being a great mom, but being in the lineage of King David and King Jesus! She didn’t allow her past to dictate her future or her kids future. She trusted God and did the best she could and she was loved and honored for it.
I hope this encourage you today. I hope you see how valuable you are to your children, to your family. And more importantly, in light of today, I hope they see it! Have a wonderful day with Jesus and your family and continue to be the best mom you can be for His glory! Wonderful Jesus!